Well wouldn’t you know it, Chinese New Year falls on Valentine’s Day 2010. Even if you’re not normally the kind of goose or gander who would tend to ring in 4707 (or 4646 depending on how you count), you’ve got a built-in theme for this year’s romantic celebrations. More than that, there are two film series here in New York and over in London offering a taste of Chinese cinema perfect for acknowledging the passing of The Year of the Ox (moo) into the Year of the Tiger (roar!).
Going to the movie theater is a long-honored Chinese tradition—so much so that New Year’s films, full of fun and fantasy with a light look at history, are a bit of a genre all their own. First up is the “Chinese New Year Film Series” at New York’s Museum of Chinese in America just north of Manhattan’s Chinatown. On this Thursday the 11th, the Museum presents, Jeffrey Lau‘s 1993 satirical historical epic “The Eagle Shooting Heroes” starring Western indie fave Maggie Cheung and others as the smirk and slip their way through the conflicts of the Song Dynasty. The following Thursday, the 18th, MOCA offers Lau’s “Chinese Odyssey 2002”, another bouncing romp through Chinese court politics and punches. Meanwhile, a spate of new releases including 72 Tenants of Prosperity, 14 Blades, True Legend, and others are hitting English and American cinemas just in time for prime holiday viewing days. Finally a peek through our “Film + Travel Asia” guidebook offers long lists of Hong Kong films by location. Netflix any one of them when you’re gearing up to light the fireworks for an extra kick of Chinese New Year cheer.
The Museum of Chinese in America
215 Centre Street
New York, New York
Top—Maggie Cheung in “The Eagle Shooting Heroes”, 1993, courtesy of Mei Ah Entertainment.
Bottom—From “True Legend”, 2010, courtesy of EDKO Film.